Physical Activity vs Physical Inactivity
Physical inactivity is second to smoking as a modifiable risk factor for poor health. Mainly as a result of massive social, environmental and lifestyle changes over the last 200 years, human beings no longer 'have' to be as physically active as they used to be, to the extent that it is damaging our health. It is estimated that physical inactivity contributes to 7,000 deaths in Australia from coronary heart disease, non-insulin dependent diabetes and colon cancer. The annual direct healthcare costs attributable to physical inactivity is approximately $400 million.
Children from Wulguru State School
displaying the 10,000 Steps tattoo
There is clear evidence that undertaking just 30 minutes of physical activity of moderate intensity on most, if not all, days of the week benefits health. To achieve health benefits, physical activity does not have to be undertaken at a single 30 minute session. It is possible to accumulate smaller 'doses' of physical activity throughout the day (minimum of 10 minutes at a time) to improve health.
The 10,000 Steps Program aims to increase the day-to-day activity of Australians by encouraging the accumulation of "incidental" physical activity as part of your everyday living. Significant health and well-being benefits can be made simply by moving more everyday.
Many people can reach 10,000 steps a day by adding a 30-minute walk to their everyday activities. If you're not very active right now, that's okay. Start out slowly and gradually increase your activity over time. Even small increases in your daily activities can have a big impact on your health.
To find out how many steps you do each day, you can use a pedometer (step counter). The pedometer will assist you in setting goals and monitoring your daily activity levels.
Converting other physical activities into steps
10,000 Steps encourages all types of physical activity, even those activities where a pedometer cannot be worn, such as swimming. Your steps are counted whether you are mowing the lawn or participating in your favourite sport. Use the table below to convert you activity into steps.
10 minutes of moderate intensity activity = 1,000 Steps
10 minutes of high intensity activity = 2,000 Steps
|Cause a slight, but noticeable increase in breathing and heart rate. You should be able to maintain a conversation.
||Makes you "huff and puff" and talking in full sentences between breaths is difficult.|
|Some Examples of Moderate Intensity Activity
||Some Examples of High Intensity Activity|
Where to get a pedometer
Fred the Frill Neck Lizard and Happy Heart (Heart Foundation partners in the 10,000 Steps Program)
Pedometers are available for purchase at a variety of sports stores and chemists around Townsville. For more information check local outlets. Pedometers are available for loan from Townsville City Council CityLibraries including:
- CityLibraries - Flinders Street
Level 1 Northtown, 280 Flinders Street, City
- CityLibraries - Aitkenvale
4 Petunia Street, Aitkenvale
- CityLibraries - Thuringowa Central
86 Thuringowa Drive, Thuringowa Central
10,000 Steps Walkway
Townsville has a number of 10,000 Steps signed walkways or circuits to help you achieve your 10,000 Steps per day - which is the recommended daily step goal for a healthy adult. You can find signed 10,000 Circuits at the following locations:
- Ross River Parkway Aplins Circuit - 5300m/6625 Steps
- Rowes Bay to Pallarenda - 4000m/5000 Steps (one way)
- Wetlands Circuit - 5860m/7325 Steps
- Anderson Botanic Garden Circuit - 1554m/1942 Steps
- Riverway Circuit - 3700m/4625 Steps
- Castle Hill
10,000 Steps walkway brochures are available from Council, please phone 1300 878 001.
10,000 Steps Web Site
To log your steps and learn more about current events, please visit the 10,000 Steps website.
10,000 Steps launch in Rossiter Park
For more information, please contact the Sunsafety team on 1300 878 001 or email Sunsafety.